WHAT ARE MACRONUTRIENTS (MACROS)?

WHAT ARE MACRONUTRIENTS (MACROS)?

WHAT ARE MACRONUTRIENTS (MACROS)?

PROTEIN
Protein is essential for building muscle and repairing damage throughout the body. It is made up
of building blocks called amino acids. Some amino acids can be produced in the body and some
need to be eaten in food. Your protein intake should depend on your weight and activity. And
while getting in enough protein is important—more is not always better. Too much protein, and
not enough carbs and fats, can result in the body relying on protein for energy instead of using
it for gaining and repair muscle. Knowing your protein needs is key for reaching your weight and
activity goals.

CARBOHYDRATES
Simply put, carbohydrates provide energy. Quick energy carbs come from fruits, candy, sports
drinks, and processed starches, like white bread and crackers. They should be eaten around a
workout so your body uses the energy that they give. When you eat simple carbs and do not use
the energy they provide, the excess energy can be stored as fat. Slowly digested, or complex carbs,
have more fiber, which prolongs their release of energy and helps to keep digestion regular. Some
examples of complex carbs are whole wheat pasta, brown rice, and quinoa. These carbs are ideal
when activity isn’t in the immediate future.

FATS
The types of fats that we eat are important. Fats from plant sources like nuts, avocados, and
vegetable oils are excellent sources. Fats from animals have their place in a healthy diet, too, but
should be eaten in lesser amounts since they are higher in saturated fats, which can affect heart
health. When you eat fats is also important. You should try to consume fats in each meal since
they will help to keep you fuller longer. Fat shouldn’t be eaten right before or during workouts
since your body requires quick energy during those times.

How to Get a Total Body Workout Without Equipment

How to Get a Total Body Workout Without Equipment

 

Dumbbells, barbells, and weight racks are in the gym for a good reason, but it’s also possible to achieve a total body workout without the aid of machines or free weights. For those looking to workout without equipment, we put together this awesome guide to build a better you via sweat and perseverance:

Short Circuit Workouts

You can quickly ramp up your gym routine via the use of short circuit workouts. By doing exercises in a circuit with brief rest periods between each set, you can build cardio and muscle growth in your workout without equipment.

Between each circuit, our experts recommend a quick rest period of about two minutes. That may sound intense, but don’t be intimidated! If you find yourself unable to hit the desired number of reps in a particular set, you can rest-pause until you hit the target. In a rest-pause, you can take about 10-20 seconds to catch your breath until you have the energy to keep going and finish out.

Exercises for a Full Body Workout

So, what should you do during your short circuit? There are countless options for your circuit and you can mix things up based on your skill level, experience, and targeted areas. In keeping with the CrossFit tradition, these exercises will give you a total body workout, even if you choose to avoid the typical equipment.

Pushups and jumping jacks probably felt silly back in your Phys. Ed days, but they can be an integral part of your short circuit plan. Beginners – and even CrossFit veterans – often look to kickstart their circuit with 10-15 push-ups followed by jumping jacks until they hit the one minute mark.

These simple no-equipment exercises are a great way to get the blood moving for the rest of the workout. More advanced athletes may choose to dial up the number of push-ups or modify them into incline push-ups, but be sure to leave enough in the tank for the rest of the rigorous workout.

After that, you can incorporate spider lunges, walking lunges, hip thrusts, and crunches into your circuit. The number of reps in each set is up to you and you can fill out each minute with jumping jacks or similar exercises if you choose. Remember, once you’re done, it’s time to start back from square one after a quick two minute break.

Get The Best Workout Without Equipment From The Pros At Sweat Factory Crossfit!

It can be hard to stay motivated when working out at home or in the gym without the guidance of a personal trainer. Personal trainers at traditional gyms wind up being incredibly expensive, but sessions with the experts at Sweat Factory Crossfit will cost you a whole lot less per session.

To get the ultimate workout without equipment (and total body workouts with equipment), sign up for your free trial at Sweat Factory CrossFit today!

Focusing on Real Food Not Food Products

Focusing on Real Food Not Food Products

With sugar and fat being infamously known as “bad” foods, it’s no wonder that food companies create and sell foods listed as being sugar-free, light, low-fat, etc. They do this in an attempt to make you, the consumer, think these foods are healthier options by using popular buzz-words.

What do these terms mean? For a food item to be listed as “light”, “low”, or “free” of something, it has to meet a certain specification when compared to the regular product.

Here are the qualifications for companies to label their products with these buzz-words:

  • “Fat-free” foods must have less than 0.5 gram of fat per serving.
  • “Low-fat” foods must have 3 grams of fat or less per serving.
  • “Reduced-fat” foods must have at least 25% less fat than regular versions of those foods.
  • “Light” foods must have either 1/3 fewer calories or 50% less fat

However, most of these foods are processed snacks. You’ve probably seen them in the grocery store; they’re usually lurking in the middle section of the store, in the aisles with the crackers, chips, puddings, and sodas.

 

Here are some examples: 

 

The problem with these foods is that typically, by taking something out (like sugar or fat), manufacturers have to compensate by putting something else in. For example, the sugar in diet sodas is often replaced with artificial sweeteners which have been shown to negatively affect your metabolism, among many other health problems.

People often eat these foods in an attempt to avoid the calories, sugar, and fat in a food. However, what they don’t realize is that they are doing a lot more harm than good, and even if a food is free of something doesn’t make it healthy. A handful of nuts, for example, is definitely not fat-free; but it has many health benefits that make it well worth eating.

Just because a food is “fat-free”, doesn’t mean it’s guilt-free. Often, foods like this leave you craving and reaching for the real thing to satisfy your taste buds. We have seen many clients avoid fat like the plague because they think fat will make them fat. This is not the case. You want to incorporate healthy fats into your diet such as nuts, seeds, and avocado.

Instead of turning to these food products, focus on eating real, whole foods. This includes veggies, fruits, lean proteins, healthy sources of fat and whole grains. Eating healthy foods will keep you full and satisfied, as well as making you feel good so that you can tackle your goals!

Xomir Nadal

Xomir Nadal

6 Week Challenge Finisher
Xomir lost 12lbs and 3% Bodyfat.

What did she learn:
“I lost my mom and aunt to breast cancer within the last 11 months and I was very sad.
I found that I need to keep myself healthy because breast cancer runs in my family.
I also found the ability to go through life with a positive attitude, happy, and healthy. This definitely changed my life.”

PROTEIN POWDER 101

PROTEIN POWDER 101

Both seasoned athletes and gym neophytes know that the cocktail of choice when working out is a protein shake. Lots of these powders are designed to serve different purposes, which means there are so many to choose from it can make your head swim, Phelps style. If you feel overwhelmed when shopping for a protein supplement, don’t fear, there are answers to all of your questions. Nutrition School is in session and your first class, Protein 101 will teach you all you need to know.

Why should you choose protein powder? Whether you are a gym rat or a couch potato you need protein. Protein is composed of amino acids, which are the fundamental building blocks of muscle proteins and enzymes, making it a crucial part of a daily diet. According to Men’s Health, protein also prevents blood sugar spikes and boosts the hormones that tell your body you’re full and should put the fork down. We believe that the biochemical mechanism responsible for preventing sugar spikes is gluconeogenesis. Basically, when a protein is broken down to amino acids, these amino acids can be used to make proteins such as muscle proteins or biochemically changed to sugars. This transformation is called gluconeogenesis.  What is interesting is that gluconeogenesis is a way to slowly adding sugar to your energy system without spiking sugar or insulin.

Protein powder can be a great way to up the health quotient to your favorite recipes. Bodybuilding states that whey protein is a good addition to your menu if you are looking to build muscle and lose fat. When you combine whey with a health regimen like a workout routine, this protein supplement can help pump you up with lean muscle and increase your strength, as well as help you maintain the hard body you already have. A study in Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism stated that 35 grams of protein per meal is a target amount for a healthy diet.

You should always read the Supplement Facts information on labels  When choosing a protein powder, checking out the fine print is a smart idea. Finding a high-quality protein will not only taste better but offer you more benefits and a healthier shake. When weighing which kind to buy, whey comes out on top as far as nutritional value. The ‘biological value’, or the proportion of absorbed protein you get from your food, is generally higher with whey products. The other types of protein powders: casein, egg white, soy, hemp, and others are lower biological value. Furthermore, in the case of soy protein, there is the chance that you are getting protein derived from a GMO source. Be on the lookout for powders with a limited amount of added sugar and carbohydrates as well as little in the way of additives. Beware of the blends, suggests Oxygen magazine, powders that have “concentrates” or “solids” which can be hard on the digestive system and might cause problems like bloating or gas.

If you are using shakes to shed pounds, according to the Cleveland Clinic, choosing a powder with no added sugars or sweeteners is key.

When is the best time to throw back a protein packed shake? Some people use their shakes as a meal replacement, having one at the beginning of the day or as their lunch when they don’t have time for a mid-day meal. That said, protein powders shouldn’t replace real food, as a rule. Many bodybuilders and fitness fanatics like to imbibe before or after a workout. Some sip during their sweat session too. According to a study in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, there is a small window of time when a shake is optimal for your body. About thirty minutes after a gym session, these amino acids will have the most impact on your muscles, bringing you a bit of extra strength and muscle gain. It also helps to repair muscles and recover after exercise. For weight management, the Cleveland Clinic suggests a steady supply of protein at meals to keep you constantly satiated.

In the SFH supplement world, some powders are created to take before a workout. Fuel is a great option if you aren’t going home after the gym or you need something to get your get-up-and-go going before your exercise routine. FUEL contains coconut milk, which is a natural source of coconut fat. This is considered an energy fat burns quickly, providing a burst of energy rather than being stored as fat. FUEL is a fantastic way to get your energy revved without having a heavy meal sit in the pit of your stomach and weigh you down.

How can you mainline your protein powder in the most delicious way? Shakes are the most popular way of getting your powder boost. There are many recipes, from simply adding water or milk and shaking, to combining a variety of fruits, vegetables, nut butters, and ice and blending into a creamy, frothy frappe. Depending on your favorite foods, you can mimic the taste with different shake recipes. If you’re a fan of chocolate covered strawberries, try making a protein smoothie with chocolate protein powder and blended strawberries. If you like pina coladas, you can go for a run in the rain with your smoothie made from coconut and pineapple blended with vanilla whey protein powder.

There are other ways to get your amino acids in powder form. You can use protein powder like flour and make protein-rich pancakes, waffles, muffins, cookies, muffins and more, making those treats and sweets a little more nutritious. Maybe add some powder to your coffee for a protein-infused latte. Make a batch of quick overnight oats with added protein powder for a complete meal, which will hold you over until lunchtime. Using unflavored powder can also enhance your cooking. Adding a scoop to your appetizers, like hummus or guac, could mean you will fill up faster and dip fewer chips. Or perhaps sprinkle the powder in a soup or sauce you are making for extra oomph. The powder will be undetectable to the taste buds, but the addition of protein in your diet will be duly noted by the rest of your body.

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